Sunday, February 6, 2011

Cleaning out the Inbox

Time for a inbox cleaning and we start with football with the announcement of the Hall of Fame inductees for 2011 and the fast whining of Steeler fans concerning the missing Jerome Bettis and Dermontti Dawson from the class.
Sorry, "stiller" fans,but Jerome Bettis is the Craig Biggio of football.Good career numbers based on years in the game that piled and hit the point of "Well,they reached number X,so they'll get in....
He will get his induction to Canton eventually and his numbers will get him into the shrine,but the truth is that Bettis rolled up his numbers over longevity and wasn't really the type of force that deserves first ballot induction.
As for Dermontti Dawson,he was the best center of his time and he also will eventually get in and deservedly so.
The main problem for centers and guards getting in is that there is no measurable statistics for them and even though tackles have the same problem,tackle is a more visible position than on the interior line.
Considering that,offensive linemen will usually get edged out by players at other positions that have stats that can be measured.
Both players will get in,just relax a bit.

More Hall of Fame thoughts on who did get in.
Deion Sanders is an annoying,pompous self promoter,who rarely tackled anyone.
That said,he was the best cover corner of his time and deserves the call,despite how it pains me to write that.

Marshall Faulk was a game changer,a player that teams had to set their defensive game plan around in his years with the Colts and Rams.
Faulk might have been the best all around back of the last 40 years and that says a lot.
Anyone that says Jerome Bettis deserves induction over Marshall Faulk needs to either A) Take their black and yellow glasses off and look at things realistically or B) Enroll in our "Learn how to watch football beyond rooting for your favorite team" course that will be available as soon as you want to pay for it.....

Ed Sabol was a slam dunk for his work with NFL Films and should have been in years ago for his contributions.
If you are under 45,you likely had a large portion of your football addiction started by Ed Sabol and NFL Films.
Anyone complaining about the rush to add Ed Sabol over anyone else,needs to realize that Ed Sabol is 94 years old,he deserved it years ago and doing this now allows him to see his induction.
If that means Cris Carter,Jerome Bettis and Curtis Martin wait a year,I am more than fine with that...

Richard Dent was one of those players that was a borderline pick to me.
Dent has waited a while and I wouldn't argue against him,but I wouldn't argue for him really either.

Shannon Sharpe strikes me as the same,nothing to scream about being in or out.
A borderline guy as no team ever worried about the focus of their defense being shutting down Shannon Sharpe.
Sharpe is much like Jerome Bettis though, as he accumulated enough numbers over time that he got in despite being a good,not great player.
Sharpe does have a TV pulpit though and never underestimate that in his getting in.

The NFL Veterans Committee got two players in with the additions of Les Richter and Chris Hanburger.
Richter was way before my time,but I liked this pick with Richter playing three positions,center,linebacker and kicker and made eight pro bowls in his nine year career.
Hanburger was a player that I did see and he was a very good,not great player.
Seems like the key anymore is getting the Veterans Committee recommendation as they don't seem to turn many of those players down....

ESPN doesn't have a large number of real quality journalists on either their network or website.
Fortunately,they have one in Wright Thompson,who scores again with an excellent article on Vince Lombardi's house and the shrine that it has become to Packer fans.
It also deals with the current owners,who bought the house from Lombardi and has tons of photos of the interior of the home...

Finally,an interesting idea that will never happen discusses the idea of the "Cleveland/Pittsburgh Metropolitan area" .
This area could become a powerhouse through working together and go a long way towards helping economic problems in both Northern Ohio and Western Pennsylvania.
And each city could keep their own sports teams!!!!


ChristheFirst said...

Chris Hanburger- Elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2011
9× Pro Bowl selection (1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976)
4× First-team All-Pro selection (1972, 1973, 1975, 1976)
2× Second-team All-Pro selection (1969, 1974)
8× First-team All-Conference (1968, 1969, 1970, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976)
1972 NFL 101 NFC Defensive Player of the year.
What more did he have to do Shawn?

Shawn said...

Very good,not great.
Besides,Chris-I didn't say no,just that it seems like anymore with the Football HOF that if you get the Veterans Committee endorsement,you get in.

Hanburger to me is a hair below players I would vote for,but is not a guy that I would go crazy against being in....

ChristheFirst said...

What do you consider great then? Because you didn't answer the question. What guidelines are you using that other journalists and football players aren't? You can't sit there and write that you never watched him play but he was only very good. His peers tell another story.

Shawn said...

I saw Hanburger play,it was Les Richter whom I never saw play.
Richter retired six years before I was born,I saw the later years of Hanburger's career.

To me,he was a very good,Pro Bowl level linebacker that is a borderline HOF pick.
Much like Randy Gradishar,who I also saw play and is not in yet.
# 7× Pro Bowl selection (1975, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1983)
# 5× First-team All-Pro selection (1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981)
# 1× Second-team All-Pro selection (1983)
# 7× All-AFC selection (1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1983)
# 1978 NFL Defensive Player of the Year

Pretty comparable numbers with Hanburger playing a slightly longer career.
Gradishar isn't in.
I think Gradishar was slightly better than Hanburger and isn't in.
Hanburger's being in now likely puts Gradishar in sooner or later and that is fine with me.

My main question about Hanburger and any Veterans committee pick in any sport for that matter is this -What changed from the years that he was eligible and didn't get voted in until now?
Did his numbers improve?
Did players that didn't think he was worthy change their mind?
Yes,sometimes players fall through the cracks,although Baseball seems to have the most of this type..

You want my definition of great?
Ok,here it is-I want a player the opposing side of the ball went into every game knowing that player was a difference maker.
That controlling that player was often the difference in the game and far more often than now,that player was superior despite game plans.
Chris Hanburger was not that type of player,in my opinion,nor was Randy Gradishar.
That to me is the difference between very good and great.